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Paleo Diet: Smart eating or latest fad? by YahooGreen


by Yahoo!Green, on Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:25am PDT

By Michael d'Estries, Mother Nature Network

In the quest for optimum health and weight, should humans consider looking back at what their ancestors consumed? That's the theory proposed by the "Paleo Diet" (aka, Caveman Diet), which recommends taking cues from the age of hunters and gatherers and leaving some of our modern food groups behind.

The idea is simple: You eat a diet that's gluten-free, but rich in lean, organic meats, fish, poultry, eggs, vegetables, fruit and nuts. As much as possible should be sourced locally. You exclude grains, legumes, dairy products, salt, refined sugar and processed oils.

All of this measures up to a eating regimen that, according to Loren Cordain, professor of health and exercise at Colorado State University, is a "powerful way to normalize health and well-being."

Cordain is joined by thousands of others who have found similar success on the Paleo — with the site Whole9 providing perhaps the best description of the benefits saying:

"Eating like this is good for maintaining a healthy metabolism, and reducing inflammation within the body. It’s been doing great things for my energy levels, body composition and performance in the gym. It also helps to minimize my risk for a whole host of lifestyle diseases and conditions, like diabetes, heart attack and stroke."

WebMD, which always does a decent job of uncovering the truth behind these diets, quizzed a bunch of health specialists who agreed that better health can be achieved on the Paleo, but still believe moderation is the key to overall well-being.

"People who eat diets high in whole grains, beans, and low-fat dairy tend to be healthier because these foods are nutrient-rich and there are mountains of research about the health benefits of diets that include, not exclude, these foods,” Keith Ayoob, EDd, RD, and assistant professor at New York's Albert Einstien School of Medicine told the site.

That "mountains of research" bit touched upon by Ayoob is one of the problems facing the Paleo from gaining more scientific backing. There just haven't been enough large studies to satisfy experts; which is one of the main reasons why U.S. News & World Reports ranked the diet nearly dead last in every category for its first ever "Best Diets" report.

"For the Paleo Diet, additional evidence is needed to show conclusively whether or not it is as effective as some people hypothesize," Ben Harder, general manager of Health and Science at the magazine told ABC News. "The most relevant studies have been small, as our published review of the Paleo Diet indicates. We hope researchers will publish more — and larger — studies on the Paleo Diet so that health experts, including our expert panel, have more evidence to consider in the future."

Still interested in giving the Paleo a shot? Wikipedia has some great background information on the diet — while the official site can get you started on meal plans and other advice


Tips to Improve Your Mental Health - Every Day!

To View complete, original article, click on link. http://www.mhasp.org/help/stress-week.html 


Tips to Improve Your Mental Health - Every Day!


Try the following tips to help plan a week that will leave you feeling good, inside and out. If you are receiving treatment for a mental health problem, these tips can help you manage your illness and support your treatment and recovery.




Relax. Try meditating, taking a walk in a natural setting, or reaching out spiritually through prayer. Quiet reflection, alone or in the company of others, can improve your state of mind, strengthen your sense of self and community, and give time away from a hectic schedule to collect your thoughts and reenergize for the week ahead.




Make a plan. Decide what tasks you need to complete for the week and make a plan for when and how to do them. If you are overscheduled, decide what can wait a week or two. If you don't have much on your schedule, plan some activities you'll look forward to.




Surround yourself with supportive people. Make plans with family members and friends, or seek out activities at which you can meet new people, such as a club, class, or support gorup. Reconnect with someone you have lost touch with and create new memories.




Take care of your body. Taking care of yourself physically can improve your mental health. Be sure to eat nutritious meals, avoid cigarettes, drink alcohol only in moderation, drink plenty of water, get enough sleep and exercise regularly.




Give of yourself. Volunteer your time and energy to help someone else. You'll feel good about doing something tangible to help someone in need-and it's a great way to meet new people who share your interest and compassion.




Broaden your horizons. Create a change of pace or expand your interests. Explore a new hobby, plant a garden, plan a road trip, try a new restaurant, take dance lessons, or learn to play an instrument or speak another language.




Value yourself. Treat yourself with kindness and respect, and avoid self-criticism. Take stock of the qualities you like about yourself, your accomplishments and abilities. Take some time every day to relax, reflect and rejuvenate.



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